Stepnell to build new events building for National Memorial Arboretium

Construction company Stepnell has been chosen to build a £5.6 million new events building for the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire.

The contract award follows the outstanding success of the stunning Remembrance Centre previously built by Stepnell at the Arboretum, which is the UK’s national focus for remembrance. The Remembrance Centre, which opened to the public in October 2016 and was officially opened by the Duke of Cambridge earlier this year, has received a series of architectural and construction awards.

Designed by Glen Howells Architects – who also designed the Remembrance Centre – the events building is being built in the second phase of the Arboretum’s development programme and will create a high-quality, permanent venue for its many different functions and events. As well as further improving the experience for event visitors, the new building will become an integral element in ensuring the future commercial sustainability of the Arboretum.

The Stepnell team will start work at the end of November with the project due to be completed in summer 2018.

The 2,500 sq m building will offer banqueting space for up to 300 guests; a bar area for drinks receptions; a kitchen and meeting rooms. Designed to complement the Remembrance Centre, the single-storey steel-framed building will feature timber cladding and extensive glazing giving views over the Arboretum grounds, which are home to around 350 memorials and 30,000 trees. The design incorporates wind catchers, an energy-efficient form of natural ventilation.

Stepnell construction director Bill Haynes says: “After the highly successful Remembrance Centre project, everyone is pleased and excited to be continuing our excellent working relationship with the Arboretum through this second project. We are proud to have been appointed to deliver this superb addition to the Arboretum’s facilities and look forward to starting work.”

Accolades for the Remembrance Centre built by Stepnell at the Arboretum include a RIBA National Award; the RIBA West Midlands Building of the Year title and the award for Natural and Cultural Heritage at the British Construction Industry Awards. Stepnell project manager John Neill also won gold at the 2017 Construction Manager of the Year Awards for his role in overseeing its construction.